Mahindra have broken out their season four Formula E car, the M4Electro, early at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Nick Heidfeld drove the M4Electro up the hillclimb course for the demonstrations, as well as taking part in the shoot-out.
He completed the hillclimb in 48.59 seconds, placing him fifth overall and setting a new benchmark for electric open wheel cars.
All of the components of the new powertrain have been made lighter, and supposedly more efficient.
The biggest revolution in the new car is the switch from using two gears to direct drive using a single motor, the same as the current Renault powertrain used by e.dams and Techeetah.
Despite this, Nick Heidfeld says the design is not inspired by anybody:
“I would not say it is an inspiration from anybody else. We try to analyse, predict and simulate what is best, then we try not to follow but to beat the others,” he said.
“Obviously it’s a difficult target but if you just follow what the others do, you will never beat them.”
Team Principal Dilbagh Gill added that while the car has undergone surgery, the principles in their designs remain unchanged.
“We have basically redone the car in its entirety. While it’s still an evolution of last year, the motor, the gearbox and all the components are different. But the philosophy is the same as last year.”
The car has completed 223km in private testing during which they were able to run at 180kW, which is to be the new race power setting for season four, with the Mahindra running smoothly throughout.
“It has been very nice, especially to see that we come here after not many miles on it previously and it’s been problem-free so far,” Heidfeld said.
“If you have something new there are always some small things, but relatively speaking it has been very smooth. So touch wood and hope that it will continue like that.”
Mahindra are enjoying their best season to date, sitting third in the team’s standings to only e.dams and ABT.